Fire safety norms go for a toss in western Odisha

Following is a report from the TNIE:

SAMBALPUR:  None of the private nursing homes in Sambalpur is fire safety compliant and adhere the norms prescribed by the State Government last year.Only two private nursing homes out of 30 have applied for No Objection Certificate (NOC) for fire safety compliance.

In Balangir, none of the nursing homes is fire safety compliant, said Fire Officer Abani Kumar Swain. While all the hospitals have fire extinguishers, they do not work in absence of regular maintenance. Worse, medical staff are not trained to handle these facilities.

Secretary of Sambalpur Private Hospital and Nursing Home Association, Dr Purshottam Agrawal, said if the State Government decides to strictly implement the fire safety norms laid down by it last year, all the 1,770 private hospitals and nursing homes in the State will close down. The norms mandate sufficient space in a hospital/nursing home for movement of fire brigade, underground and overhead water tanks, installation of sprinklers and fitting of water hose to be run by generators.  A majority of the private hospitals and nursing homes were constructed before 2015 and hence cannot adhere to the space norms, he added. Besides, leaving vacant space in crowded places like Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Rourkela and Sambalpur is not feasible. He, however, admitted installation of hose pipes for supply of water in case of fire, underground and overhead tanks can be addressed by all.
The situation is equally grim in DHHs and VIMSAR, Burla. At the 1000-bed VIMSAR, fire extinguishers are only present in the ICU, Casualty Ward and five OTs. The hospital, however, is well ventilated.

The Sambalpur DHH, which has 268 beds, has no fire extinguishers or firefighting equipment. Surprisingly, Hospital Manager Sudip Kumar Dutta said they have sufficient extinguishers installed in the hospital, which also has several exit passages. “After SUM Hospital mishap, we have asked local fire officer to visit our hospital and suggest measures,” he added.

Even as the 165-bed Bhawanipatna DHH in Kalahandi district has 16 fire extinguishers, only one staff is trained to handle them. CDMO BK Brahma said more persons will be sent for training this year. ADMO (Medical) of 184-bed Balangir DHH, Daitari Sahu said there are 25 fire extinguishers and 15 security personnel have been trained in using them.

October 25, 2016 at 7:52 am Leave a comment

Eminent danseuse Gurubari Mirdha passes away

Following is a report from the Pioneer:

Because she took birth on Gurubar (Thursday), parents kept her name Gurubari, which is a practice people follow in most part of the State. And, finally she also breathed her last on a Thursday.

Gurubari Mirdha from a nondescript village in Bargarh district left a void as she passed away recently with people of the State, particularly art connoisseurs, still remembering her sterling performance as a noted Sambalpuri and Dalkhai dancer. She had tremendous contribution to popularize Sambalpuri and Dalkhai dance in the country and singularly she was enough to keep the audience spell bound for hours together through the beats of her feet. Not irrelevant to mention that she even made former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi to dance on the stage with her as Gandhi as an audience could not help it before the enthralling dance Gurubari was performing in Delhi.

But with so much talent in her, she was unable to cash in on it for her financial security. Almost during her entire life period, she was living a very miserable life. As a BPL person, she had been allotted an Indira Awas, but that she couldn’t be completed as yet.

In the year, 1987, an Odia vernacular daily carried a detail story about her poverty that drew the attention of the people abroad. And, moved by the report, Odia artist from Sweden PK Mahanadia wrote a letter to Surendra Hota of Bargarh expressing his willingness to help her financially. But at that time Gurubari couldn’t be traced as she went out of the State as a Dadan Shramik (migrant labourer) to another State.

“Think the fate of a versatile dancer opting to work as a Dadan Shramik with whom the Prime Minister of India had once danced. This is also fate of many people in Odisha who came in direct contact with many dignitaries, but remain poor forever. The case of Fanus Punji of Kalahandi is another bright example,” said Sureswar Satapathy, an elite citizen of Bargarh.

Under her guidance, a college teacher in Bargarh wrote a short play entitled ‘Lekri’ (torn up clothes ) that narrated the poverty of the versatile lady artist. The play depicts how all prizes, medals, felicitations and citations etc were meaningless for her and she needed money for survival that nobody gave her. But that drama couldn’t be staged as yet although it was completed when Gurubari lived.

“Till end of her life, a small pension from the Government and mercy of the villagers was the main source of her livelihood,” said her villagers.

October 25, 2016 at 7:32 am Leave a comment

Separate hospital for Balangir medical college

Following is a report from the TNIE:

BHUBANESWAR: The State Government has decided to build separate hospitals for the new medical colleges at Balasore, Balangir and Puri. The hi-tech hospitals are likely to be ready within next six months.

While construction of buildings for the medical colleges is underway, it was earlier decided that the existing district headquarters hospitals (DHHs) will be upgraded as per the norms of Medical Council of India (MCI).

The Centre had approved establishment of five Government medical colleges and hospitals at Balasore, Koraput, Balangir, Baripada and Puri in 2014. It was announced that all five medical colleges would have student intake capacity of 100 each and around `200 crore would be spent for upgradation of the DHHs to a full-fledged medical college and hospital in each district.

While existing DHHs at Koraput and Baripada are being upgraded as per the MCI norms, it is not feasible to upgrade the hospitals of rest three districts, sources said.
Health Secretary Arti Ahuja said at a high-level meeting chaired by the Chief Secretary, it was decided that separate hospitals will be constructed for the medical colleges at Balasore, Puri and Balangir.

“The Works Department will prepare the estimate for these new hospitals on and without turn-key basis. The estimate for equipment, instruments and furniture (EIF) will be prepared separately,” she said.Though it has not been decided whether the construction work will be done on turn-key basis, the Works Department has been asked to submit the estimate on turn-key basis and also separate estimates for civil work and EIF by September 30.

Since the Government is willing to start admission in these new medical colleges next year, ideally the infrastructure should be ready by March next. The admission can only be possible after a team from MCI gives its nod following infrastructure inspection.
While Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had laid the foundation stone for the medical college at Balasore on October 28, 2014, the same at Puri and Balangir was done on July 4 and August 30 last year. The Government has also created posts for these medical institutions.

October 17, 2016 at 4:50 pm Leave a comment

Pharmacists run the show in Sundargarh hospitals as 50 percent of doctors’ posts vacant

Following report is from TNIE:

ROURKELA: Amid shortage  of doctors, modern healthcare services in Sundargarh District Headquarters Hospital (SDHH) and peripheral health institutions across the district are in a shambles.

Hope for improvement remains a distant possibility in the wake of the State itself facing 50 per cent vacancies in doctors’ posts.

Administrative sources said about 85 periphery health institutions, including three sub-divisional hospitals, a number of Community Health Centres (CHCs) and Primary Health Centres (PHCs) in the district are being managed with about 140 existing doctors against the sanctioned post of 212. This leaves 72 posts vacant. At least 21 of the 140 doctors are learnt to have got promotion and 15 are likely to go out of the district soon.

Various CHCs have only one doctor against the minimum requirement of three, while a host of PHCs in far-flung areas have no doctor and are in a miserable condition. Pharmacists run the show in most of the PHCs like at Hathibari in Nuagaon block of Panposh sub-division and at Sol, Jarda, Tamra and Banki PHCs in remote Gurundia block of Bonai sub-division.

Habitual absenteeism of doctors in rural areas only aggravates the situation at rural health institutions. During surprise checks by Vigilance sleuths in September last year, they found doctors concerned missing from Sanpatrapali PHC (New), Kinjirkela CHC and Lathikata PHC (New) in Tangarpali, Balishankara and Lathikata blocks respectively.

The situation is no better at SDHH either. Against the bed strength of 197, it practically handles 300 to 325 patients daily with 21 vacancies against the sanctioned posts of 51 doctors.
A senior doctor said that of the 30 doctors, only 22 manage the SDHH. Eight doctors in the ranks of Joint Director Level-II and Senior Medical Officers remain engaged in immunisation programmes and drives to control malaria-dengue-diarrhoea, tuberculosis and leprosy for at least 10 to 15 days a month. Of the 22 doctors, four are likely to get new postings at Bhubaneswar, Jharsuguda and Bonai soon which would further worsen the situation.

Chief District Medical Officer (CDMO) Dr S B Naik said shortage of doctors is a state-wide phenomenon and they are committed to extend better healthcare services to the poor urban and rural population using available resources.

October 15, 2016 at 3:29 pm Leave a comment


Following report is taken from

In the month of Aswina, on the Mahaastami day of Durga Puja, people of Western Orissa celebrate Bhai Juntia. A total fasting is observed by young girls and women for the entire day and night to seek the blessings of Goddess Durga for amelioration and long life of their brothers. In villages young girls usually dance in small groups during this celebration which is known as Dalkhai dance. Dalkhai is a ritual-based folk dance which is accompanied by several musical instruments as well.

Dalkhai is basically a folk deity. Her abode is known as Dalkhai kuthi. The name Dalkhai is derived from the name of the deity as the dance is performed in her name. In the past, people worshipped the jungle deity to protect themselves from the wild animals and other dangers. Afterwards the deity became synonymous with Durga or Bana Durga. Usually through this dance they pray for the general happiness of the family and the village as a whole.

On the Durga Astami day young girls assemble on the bank of a river or a pond to take bath. One of them brings seven palm-full of sands and built a small platform for worship, they put four mango leaf and place burning wicks on them. This ritual is repeated seven times as seven girls bring palm-full of water and follow the same ritual. Thereafter prayers are offered to goddess Dalkhai for the well-being of their brothers. This is followed by songs and dances, where all the people – young or old – participate with equal enthusiasm. Earlier during the dance, young girls and boys join together in a question answer session.

In the afternoon, at Pantibela, all the girls assemble near the Dalkhai Kuthi with their baskets containing sand and other materials for worship. Some of them get dressed like Parvati and Iswara, while the rest of them carry umbrella, a stick and a water jug (Kalsi). In a procession they move to seven houses and come back to the Dalkhai Kuthi. Inside the Dalkhai Kuthi they perform several acts of the mythology. One of them acts as Bhima and some other act as Kubera. Bhima brings paddy from Kubera and sows it in the field. Songs and dances enacting various scenes from the mythology are essential part of Dalkhai.

Returning home the girls prepare for further rituals. They prepare leaf cups containing piece of sugarcane, yellow thread called ita?, 108 pieces of duba (evergreen grass), 108 pieces of unbroken rice; along with it small branches of Amla and Dahana (a sweet smelling leaf), puffed rice and dhup are placed. Separate leaf cups are arranged for each brother.

After taking bath in the river bank they prepare platform for worship. Fruits like ladies finger, frankincense (Kunduru) etc. are placed as offerings to the goddess Dalkhai. Then they change their clothes and carry their baskets and assemble near the Dalkhai Kuthi. They collect seven clay statues of Parvati, Iswara, Ganesha, Tortoise and Bull are placed inside the Dalkhai Kuthi. The ritual starts with Dhunkel and Bharni beat of the dhol. It is often seen that a person becomes possessed by a spirit of one of the deities. The villagers ask several questions regarding the wellbeing of the village. The ritual then comes to an end.

On the ninth day, all the girls again assemble near the Dalkhai Kuthi. After collecting all the articles used for the ritual on the previous day, they move in a procession accompanied by drumming of dhol and nissan to seven houses and then to the river bank to immerse all the articles. After taking bath they return home, and the 108 dub, 108 rice and yellow thread are offered to their brothers. Till the end of the tenth day of Dasahara, they are engrossed in Dalkhai dance. The entire village plunges into an energetic mood by the intoxicating effect of the melodious song and dance.

Dalkhai is performed as a ritual, whereas dance and song remains its principal interest. The dancers stand in a semi-circular formation during the dance. One after another they sing a couplet and at the end of it they dance in a particular way by bending at the waist level and move their feet rhythmically accompanied by musical instruments.

During the song dhol is played and subsequently other musical instruments like Nishan, Tasha, Jhanj and Muhari are accompanied.

The songs are composed from couplets to sixteen lines. The singer begins the song uttering “Dalkahi Re, Dalkahi Re” (twice) and finishes the lines with another pronouncement of “Dalkahi Re”. Mostly the songs are of romantic themes. At times one can find the description of nature, seasons, gods and goddesses; sometimes satire and teasing also. The singers have to depend entirely on their memory while rendering the songs – presence of mind comes handy.

During rendering Dalkhai usually Raserkeli, Mailajada, Jaiphul are also rendered. The lyrical depiction of Rasarkeli, MaelaJada and Jaiphula may look similar with Dalkhai. However, the song and rhythm of drums has different beats and style.

Dilip Kumar Padhi VU2DPI

October 15, 2016 at 3:10 pm Leave a comment

Ispat express will be extended upto Junagadh

Following is a report from the Sambad:


September 30, 2016 at 8:51 am Leave a comment

Odisha govt’s apathy puts future of new Jharsuguda hospital in doldrums

Following is a report from

Bhubaneswar: Negligence and lackadaisical attitude of the State Government has left the future of the newly set up 300 bedded hospital in Jharsuguda in the dark.

Even after completion of about 90 per cent of the hospital it is still to dysfunctional with some basic facilities yet to be completed.

Sources said the hospital which was inaugurated by none other than Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on March 4, 2013 is almost complete with more than 90 per cent of work done.

The deadline of handing over the hospital to the authorities would finish this month but still now there has not been green signal towards the issue as the future of the hospital remains uncertain.

But even after three years the authorities do not show interest to hand over the hospital while the hospital authorities are showing disinterest to interfere in the issue.

The PWD authorities said more than Rs10 crores are needed to complete the hospital as some basic facilities like electricity connection, transformers for the connection, water connections are yet to be functional.

When asked about the issue, Health Minister Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak said he would discuss the matter with the District Collector on Thursday. It will be completed by the stipulated time, he added.

The Rs 48 crore worth hospital will have 300 beds for patients and will cater to the all important healthcare needs of Jharsuguda denizens.

September 24, 2016 at 9:48 am Leave a comment

Older Posts



Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 365 other followers

%d bloggers like this: